Taming the To-Do List: How to Choose Your Best Work Every Day

Taming the To-Do List: How to Choose Your Best Work Every Day

by Glynnis Whitwer


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No matter how hard women work or how much they accomplish in a day, there's lingering anxiety and guilt over what they didn't do. We just wish the world would stop for a day so we could catch up.

Glynnis Whitwer has identified what makes us feel so overburdened—and it's probably not what you think. Taming the To-Do List exposes a seismic shift in our society: from one in which most of us were proactive toward one where we now carry the burden of having to respond—to every email, text, tweet, and message we receive. This major shift creates a cycle where everyone else sets the priorities for our days, rather than us designing our own lives.

Taming the To-Do List addresses this significant change in how we manage our time and the issue of procrastination from a woman's point of view. It addresses the common household tasks many women put off, like doing housework and scheduling doctor's appointments, and moves on to the larger, more life-impacting delays of dreams and goals. Combining practical, easy-to-apply advice with solid research and biblical truth, this book is a compassionate yet challenging message of hope for those struggling to choose their best work over busy work.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780800726720
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/18/2015
Pages: 208
Sales rank: 769,993
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Glynnis Whitwer, executive director of communications for Proverbs 31 Ministries, is a regular contributor to Encouragement for Today, the Proverbs 31 email devotional, reaching over a million women each day. She is the author of I Used to Be So Organized and When Your Child Hurts. Glynnis lives in Arizona with her family.

Jennifer Scapetis-Tycer grew up in Australia and trained and worked in London before coming to live in the U.S. Jennifer has worked in theater, TV, and radio drama. A professional voice and dialect coach, she is currently an assistant professor in the University of Connecticut's Department of Dramatic Arts.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 9

Introduction 11

1 Procrastinate? Me? 13

2 What Is Procrastination? 25

3 Understanding Some of the Whys 37

4 Assessing the Price We Pay 50

5 Myth Busters 64

6 Overcoming Our Fears 75

7 Too Busy? 89

8 Thinking with Focus and Clarity 101

9 Taming Our Perfectionist Instincts 114

10 Replacing Bad Habits with Good 127

11 Strengthening Willpower 137

12 Becoming a Wise Time Manager 151

13 Organizing Our Work 164

14 Small Changes Matter 177

15 When Is It Not Procrastination? 189

Notes 195

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Taming the To-Do List: How to Choose Your Best Work Every Day 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
RMMcDowell More than 1 year ago
I am a busy girl. Or am I? Yes, I do a lot of things. But are they my best things? And am I actually busy with them, or am I just making myself busy with other things so I don’t have to do them? These are the questions Whitwer asks and addresses in her book. Because I’m busy (which I’m starting to think is not true and is definitely not God’s intention for my life), my review of it is coming later than it was supposed to. And because I get these books and have to read them quickly to review them, I don’t have time to really dig into them like I want to and need to do in order to really apply their truths and declare them useful or not worth your time. All that said, Taming Your To-Do List is exactly what I need. Because those questions are at the start and at the end of each of my days . . . and in the middle too. I’m finding myself obligated to do things I don’t want to do and am not certain I should. I’m finding myself behind in things I want to do and feel like I should. I’m finding myself unable to sit down and enjoy a few moments of solitude because of all the things I should be doing. I’m not present where I need to be when I need to be, and everything I do feels like another opportunity for guilt. Something’s got to give. And that’s what Whitwer is writing about. From her personal experiences with procrastination and “busyness” and obligation and calling, she draws real-life examples, goals that are achievable, and practical applications that remind you to make room for what is important and good and right. I know you’re busy. We’re all busy. But the truth might be that we’re too busy not to read this book. I know I am. Disclosure: I received this book at no charge from Revell through the Revell Reads Blog Tour Program in exchange for my honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
SeasonsofGrace More than 1 year ago
When I was offered an opportunity to read this book, honestly, this is what I thought, "One more thing to add to my to-do list." And yet, taming my to-do list, was exactly what I needed to read about, so I went ahead and chose to prioritize the book along with all the other things I have to do. But, Oh My Word, It was soooo worth it!! Glynnis addresses things in her book I have struggled with for years. And also enlightened me quite to my dismay on some personal issues I have, such as procrastinating! That is a biggie for me. I like to say, "I work well under pressure." Basically, I just mean, I leave things til the last minute and then get them done because I HAVE to. But in doing so, am I really doing my best work, or just getting it done? I want to do my best for my family, and especially for my Lord and Savior. Life has changed so drastically in the last few years, especially the way we communicate and that is something Glynnis talks about. The need to be immediately, at any given moment, at everyone else's disposal, which in turn hinders our productivity levels. It also keeps us operating re-actively instead of pro-actively. I know this is true in my own life. So many outward things always seem to be demanding my time, knowing which to prioritize and which to let go is a difficult assignment. There is so much to glean from this book, you won't want to miss it! I am planning on re-reading it slowly and taking my time applying these principles. This is not one you want to just rush through. Invest in it and you will be doing your best work by the time you are through. I received this book from Revell in exchange for my honest opinion.
gbautista72 More than 1 year ago
Excellent book. Easy read. I appreciate the enlightening, insightful wisdom, knowledge & experience from Glynnis Whitwer. I will re-read this book because the basic ideas are very relevant and helpful. She reminds us to prioritize, to focus, & to seek & ask God how to proceed, what to do & re-evaluate priorities.
michelemorin More than 1 year ago
Don't Put It Off I really didn’t think I needed this book. It was written for procrastinators, for people who need help in Taming the To-Do-List. If anything, I’m an “ante-crastinator,” too faint-hearted to wait until the last minute, who goes into panic mode just thinking about the potential of going into panic mode. But then I read Glynnis Whitwer’s definition of procrastination, “a voluntary delay of something we could do but choose not to,” and thought about the weight I gained during the perilous winter of 2015. Yes, THAT weight that was going to come off over the summer . . . And now autumn is here. Needless to say, that epiphany instantly leveled my objections and heightened my attention to the details of the book, and I found myself not only reading it but also working through the end-of-chapter questions as I read. Glynnis’s words resonated for me and my plight: “It’s not that we don’t get things done — we don’t get the right things done.” Yes, my do-list gets “tamed” on a daily basis — I love those check marks! But it’s the things I don’t write down and that don’t get done that stand in the way of my goals: take a walk; prepare healthy snacks; go to bed! So, I’m in. I’m ready to stop feeling regret and to face the discomfort of saying no to myself about unhealthy eating choices (Chapter 2). I will stop believing the myth that I can eat anything I want and still experience good health (Chapter 5). I will make better choices about how I use my time so that I will be less likely to stress-eat (Chapter 7), and I will adopt an appreciation for this new concept: “mono-tasking” (Chapter 8). There is abundant wisdom to be found in the final chapters of Glynnis’s fine book, particularly around the topic of wise waiting. “All procrastination is delay, but not all delay is procrastination.” Waiting for the best time, waiting for other priorities to be fulfilled, waiting for God to give clear direction –these are great reasons for delayed action, and this journey of facing an area of my life that needs strengthening is a great reason for me to have read a book that I thought I didn’t need. Is it possible that you need it too? For more about Taming the To-Do List in Glynnis’s own words, check out her web-site, but particularly this entry. This book was provided by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, in exchange for my review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
ShareeS More than 1 year ago
I loved Taming the To Do List because every chapter is applicable to real life, everyday issues. Ms. Whitwer talks about how procrastination is a huge problem for us and how through it, our to do lists make us overwhelmingly busy while we accomplish little. I think one of the most powerful chapters for me was Assessing the Price We Pay. “But every yes to one choice is actually also a no to something else.” (Pg. 50) She talks about how we often make choices without counting the cost of what those choices will take. Essentially, that we need to think about the commitment and choices we make that will consume our time so that we aren’t bankrupting ourselves over bad decisions. One of my favorite quotes from the book states: “God wants to give us His strength for the work we have to do. He wants to direct our paths and be our encourager. But He can’t do that when we shut Him out. God is tearing down my independence, brick by brick, and I’m so glad.” (Pg. 73) I particularly enjoyed the section at the end of each chapter called Practical Application. The short exercises help the reader to apply what they’ve learned in that chapter. Overall, the book is wonderful and a great way to not only recognize the issues over impossible to do lists, but also to deal with them. I received this book from Revell in exchange for my honest opinion which I’ve provided here. https://wordynerdyblog.wordpress.com/2015-book-reviews/taming-the-to-do-list-by-glynnis-whitwer/
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is AWESOME! Glynnis Whitwer pulls the cover off of procrastination and really gets down to the heart of why people procrastinate. After reading this book I no longer have any excuses as to why I can't complete any task I set out to do. I now have a clearer understanding as to how to move out of procrastination ans use wisdom when creating a TO-DO list. As a result I have a fresh wind! This book will BLESS YOUR LIFE!